tv The Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer CNN July 15, 2011 2:00pm-4:00pm PDT
casey anthony, big day. she's getting out of jail on sunday. will you be doing some commentary this weekend? or are you taking this weekend off? >> i may very well, but certainly i'll be talking about it on monday morning. >> have a good weekend, whatever you might end up doing. good to see you as always. thank you so much for being here with me in the cnn news room. i of course will be with you tomorrow and sunday. the president said he's willing to think small if he has to in order to break the stalemate over raising the debt limit. also new apologies from media mogul rupert murdoch. he met with the family of a murdered teenager whose phone was hacked by his now defunct tabloid. there are fast-moving developments in this scandal. it's ungulfing his entire news empire. and as casey anthony prepares to get out of jail on sunday, will
she shun the media spotlight or will she try to capitalize on her supposed fame? i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room." >> president obama back at the bully pulpit for the second time this week to make sure ameripay bill. he went before reporters to keep pushing raising the debt ceiling limit before the august 2 deadline. he seems to be softening his terms somewhat. let's go to the white house. our correspondent dan lothian has the very latest. >> he said it' time for law makers from both parties to make tough choices. he says he's been willing to put entitlement programs on the table, but even so, there's no deal tonight. and some republicans are saying
it's time for the president to put his own plan on the table, not make another speech. president obama still thinks the so-called big deal option is the right deal. >> what's important is that even as we raise the debt ceiling, we also solve the problem of underlying debts and deficits. i'm glad congressional leaders don't want to default, but i think the american people expect more than that. they expect us to solve this problem and get our fiscal house in order. >> but after five straight days of talks with congressional leaders, reality appears to be lowering the president's expectations. >> it is hard to do a big package. >> with credit agencies issuing urgent warnings about the consequence kbenss of default and republicans on capitol hill talking about backup options, president obama ipd b kated he isn't shutting the door on their ideas. >> if they show me a serious plan, i'm ready to move. even if it requires some tough
decisions on my part. >> even if it may only raise the debt ceiling but not tackle the debt ceiling problem in a significant way. >> if washington operates as usual and can't get anything done, let'sat least avert armageddon. >> he says that includes higher interest rates on things like credit cards or loans which would hit all americans like a tax hike, exactly what republicans refuse to make part of any deal. the president still remains optimistic that ongoing talks are optimistic. >> i always have hope. don't you remember my campaign? even after being here for 2 1/2 years, i continue to have hope. >> he said the american people don't care for the reality tv
act of these negotiations. that's why he says the big deal is best thing to make the markets happy but to show the american people that they can get things done. >> but there's no chance the republicans will vote for tax increases, even the closing of loopholes that he wants that would justify the big deal. so he's obviously scaling back his ambition right now. making a smaller deal, but even more likely, he might get that compromise with mitch mcconnell, a temporary stop gap measure, if you will, to avert what he called financial armageddon. is that the sense you're getting as well? >> that's certainly the sense. as you point out, republicans still pushing back on tax increases because they believe that's not the way to get at the revenue, that the way to do that is to improve the overall economy and job creation, but not raise taxes even on the wealthiest americans. >> and the president will be in town in case there's more negotiations necessary. i suspect there will be. dan, thanks very much. congress has scheduled a series of test votes next week on
alternative approaches to raising the debt limit. that includes a popular conservative plan to cut and cap federal spending and balance the budget. >> we're going to bring a bill forward next week, otherwise known as the cut, cap and balance bill to provide a balanced approach. so that we can demonstrate that we are getting things under control and that the people that put us here can gain some confidence that we're going to begin to live like they do around their kitchen tables and in their businesses. >> republican leaders also signaled they're now open to a backup plan, offered by the senate minority leader mitch mcconnell. it would allow three short-term increases in the debt ceiling between now and the end of next year by giving lawmakers a chance to cast votes, showing they disapprove. >> i am not prepared at this point to pick winners or losers.
>> senator mcconnell pointed out his plan was being put on the table as a last ditch effort. we're far from the time for a last-ditch effort. a new loss for rupert murdoch's media empire as a scandal engulfs media outlets on two continents. we just received word that one of murdoch's top executives here in the united states is now resigning. another top executive going down, susan, what's the latest? >> yes. his name is les hin ton. and he's worked for rupert murdoch in various capacity, wolf, for more than 50 years. and we are told by a number of
reporters who have been tweeting when they heard about his resignation that there was a loud gasp in the news room of the dow jones business unit that he headed up. when the resignation was announced. les hinton headed up the international division back in the late '90s through 2007 during a time when the hacking scandal really started to break wide open. in fact, he even testified before parliament at times saying that he didn't think that the news corporation was doing anything wrong, and then acknowledging in uncovering, he said only one person that he had eliminated a rotten element. at the time and thought that the scandal was over. but now he is saying from his resignation letter that he was ignorant of apparently what was going on with the corruption scandal and is calling this a very, very sad day for him. that he is losing the newspaper. but it's certainly leaving a lot
of people wondering what is next, or who might be next, wolf. >> and it comes just as the fbi and the justice department are opening up their own full-scale investigation, or at least their initial investigation into the news corporation's activities here in the united states. susan, we'll check back with you. thank you. rupert murdoch is offering a very public apology today for the phone hacking scandal and acknowledging what he calls serious wrongdoing. just days before he faces angry lawmaker ps . dan rivers has more on the murdoch scandal in london. >> wolf, it's been another day of frantic breaking news. rupert murdoch has taken out ads
apologizing for what's gone on under his leadership and in his newspapers. and perhaps incredibly, he met the family of milly dowler whose phone was hacked into by one of his papers. i'm sure incredibly emotional, that solicitor mark lewis spoke about how contrite rupert murdoch appeared. >> it was a private meeting called for by rupert murdoch. and he was humbled and gave a full and sincere apology. >> rupert and james murdoch and rebecca brooks will be forced to appear here in a committee and grill eed closelily politicians who want answers as to how all of this activity went on.
one of the people who will be interrogating rebecca brooks had some tough words for her. >> i think he was inevitable. rebecca brooks has given the resignation message she should have given on day one of this scandal when nick davis of the uk "guardian" revealed milly's phone had been hacked. >> but the political dimensions continue to evolve as well. downing street has been forced to put out a list of guests that the prime minister david cameron welcomed to his country residents checkers. mo among them was the now disgraced former editor of "the news of the world." a man hired as director of communications. he visited the prime minister three months after he was forced to step down from that high profile political role. wolf? >> dan rivers in london, much more on this story coming up later. meanwhi meanwhile, libyan rebels locked in heated battle while gadhafi's
forces get a new show of support from the obama administration. what the united states did today. and when planes collide. what caused the fear and the damage on the runway in boston. stay with us. stay with us. [ m you' you're in "the situation room." you're in "the situation room." t to those always searching for what's pure and what's real from we who believe we know just how you feel. haagen-dazs.
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the united states government today delivering a new diplomatic blow to moammar gadhafi's regime. the secretary of state hillary clinton says the united states will now recognize libya's group as the legitimate governing authority in the country. the secretary is taking part in international series of talks on the libyan crisis. a pretty dramatic development from the u.s. expected at some point. came as a little bit of a surprise to me today. but update our viewers on what's going on in istanbul, because the future of libya is at stake. >> well, that's right, wolf. as you mentioned, it was a major d diplomatic development when secretary of state hillary clinton delivered a message that the united states for the first time was recognizing the libyan
national transitional council as the legitimate governing authority in libya, at least until an interim government is created. here's more of what secretary of state clinton had to say today. >> until an interim authority is in place, the united states will recognize the tng has the authority inform libya. and the gadhafi regime no longer has legitimate authority in libya. we still have to work through legal issue, but we expect this step on recognitiognition will the tnc to access additional sources of funding. >> and wolf, as you mentioned, this did come as a bit of a surprise today. when secretary of state clinton made that announcement, applause broke out in the room where she was speaking. also good to mention that the
final communique of the meeting today, all the participants basically said that gadhafi had lost legitimacy and that right now this libyan national transitional council needed to be recognized as the legitimate governing authority and that also a cease-fire needed to be created and implemented in libya at this time. wolf? >> the opposition, as you well know, they're certainly happy with increased funding. they're happy with increased political support, but there's something else they desperately ne need. can you tell the viewers? >> that's right, wolf. we ran into the spokesperson for the libyan transitional national council at the conference today. and he was expressing quite a bit of frustration at the fact that even though so many hundreds of millions have been pledged in support, they have not received any of that money yet. he told us that at least $700 million to $800 million have been pledged in aid from many donor nations. he said they're in urgent need of those funds and more. he said they need as much as $3
billion in u.s. right now so they can implement dramatic reform to make sure these democratic institutions get created and that the political crisis there is solved as soon as possible. >> the united states has frozen $33 billion in libyan asset, gadhafi's assets here in the united states. now that the u.s. has recognized the opposition as the legitimate governing authority of the libya, they could transfer -- start transferring some of that money to the opposition. is there any indication you're getting there at the summit meeting in istanbul that the u.s. is about to do that? >> wolf, at the end of the meeting, there was hope at that possibility. the fact that the u.s. is recognizing this libyan national transitional council as the legitimate governing authority there led many to believe that possibly these assets could be unfrozen. they could start be transferred to this group. but that's not a certainty yet. and one of the things that's led to a lot of frustration among
donor nations, among members, participating delegation members at these meetings, the past four meetings that have been held. even though there's a lot of goodwill gestures towards libya, the fact of the matter is that money is not yet being transferred. people are wondering when this funding is going to be received by the interim authority there and how that's going to happen. there's a lot of talk about assets being unfrozen, credit lines being established by these countries and yet it hasn't happened yet. money hasn't been transferred an the rebels say they're in desperate need of these funds as soon as possible. >> that money could certainly buy a lot of weapons. the secretary of state is participating in these talks in istanbul, turkey. i suspect that money will start flowing to the rebels fairly soon. they should not anticipate any u.s. funds coming to libya right now, but releasing some of those frozen libyan assets iblg is going to be happening fairly soon. meanwhile after round of deadly violence in syria today. lisa sylvester sr. monitoring
that situation. some of the other stories making news here in "the situation room." >> a human rights group says government security forces open fired on demonstrators today, killing 12 people and leaving dozens of others injured. syrian state tv is reporting that armed groups fired on government horses and citizens in a damascus neighborhood. this is the fifth month of anti-government demonstrations in syria. the man who shot and killed afghan president hamid karzai's half brother had been working as a guard with the international security assistance forces against the taliban. the provencial government received training from the isaf and was one of the most trusted commanders for the karzais. mohammad was shot dead by other guards after he killed ahme ahmed wali karzai on tuesday. hugo chavez is expected to travel to brazil for cancer treatment. chavez said the next phase of his treatment could require
radiation and chemotherapy. the type of cancer is that that sha krez is battling is und undisclos undisclosed. he says despite his illness, he's still in charge of his country. >> he got initial treatment in cuba, now he's going to brazil. what's wrong with the doctors in venezuela? >> i think he wants probably the best for his money. and we certainly know he has a lot of money. >> it's a vote of no confidence inform venezuela but a vote of confidence for cuba and brazil. >> we don't know of the kind of cancer he has. >> i guess when his life is at stake, he's willing to go ahead and deal with that kind of situation. thank very much. credit agencies are warning of big trouble if the u.s. government defaults on its debt. but how seriously should their assessment be taken? we're taking a closer look. and michele bachmann decides to break from her church. what's behind the move? will it hurt or help her candidacy? candidacy?
we heard dan lothian over at the white house mention that credit agencies are already warning about serious consequences if the united states defaults on its debt. but how much stock should americans put into those agencies and the credit score they actually give the united states. lisa is back. she's got more on the story for us. >>s in tor investors around the put a lot of stock into what agencies say. and if the rating is downgraded from aaa to even aa that could create shock waves around financial markets. the u.s. government has had a stellar aaa rating since 1917 when the ratings agencies began looking at government bonds.
only once before has the u.s. triple rating been under review. but now for the first time there's real talk of the u.s. being downgrade pd. that were to happen, it would be dire. >> for the u.s., it would mean high unemployment. it would mean more volatile markets and it would mean high interest rates. and for the rest of the world, it will mean a much more unstable global economy. the reason is simple. both the u.s. and global economy is constructed and operates on the assumption that there is a aaa at the center. >> investors arnold t s around use the ratings of the three agencies to determine whether an investment is risky or relatively safe bet. they base the ratings on the probability of default. in 1975, the federal government officially recognized a handful of raisiting companies. it's a lot like your credit
score. the higher the rating, the cheaper it is for the government to borrow money. moody's says it's prepared to drop the united states from a aaa to somewhere around the aa range. on the other hand, s say s&p sa any government that can't pay its debt on time could drop from a aaa all the way down to a d. and it's not just the u.s. government. financial institutions tied to federal government are also on review for downgrade. fannie mae, freddie mac, the fed rald home loan banks and federal farm credit banks. if the debt kreeling is not raised the u.s. could still afford to pay the interest to u.s. creditors, but it would only have enough cash to run about half the government and that would likely also have a negative impact on the rating. >> of there will no way to avoid defaulting on half of our other obligations. we can't sell additional debt because we're up against the debt limit and there won't be enough money to go around.
just any of it 100 people and a lifeboat that seats 50. >> now mes financial analysts do not believe we're going to get to that point. the assumption is that something is going to come out of washington. so markets have been relatively tame. they said if you thought the collapse of lehman brothers was something really significant. they said this is going to be nothing by comparison if the debt kreeling is not raised. >> they better do something to avoid that kind of disaster. thanks very much for that report. casey anthony has serious choices to make when she gets out of jail on sunday. she's getting a lot of free advice about lying low and staying safe. and why jobless americans might want to think twice about enlisting in the military. enlisting in the military.
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the president of the united states. with deep political divisions in the country, can members of the country actually reach a grand compromise on the nation's debt? and los angeles bracing for the big one. not an earthquake, but a massive traffic jam that's being called carmageddon. i'm wolf blitzer you're in "the situation room." a florida judge today granted casey anthony's motion for a protective order. that means she won't have to face a deaf mission suit filed against her until october. casey anthony is being suzed by a woman named zenaida fernandez. she told investigators that's the name of caylee's nanny and the woman had taken the little girl and disappeared. gonzalez denied knowing anthony or her daughter. in this case, casey anthony appears to leave prison on sunday. there are concerns about her safety.
let's go to orlando. what are these concerns all about, david? >> well, wolf, it was on this very day back in 2008 that casey anthony's mother first made those dramatic 911 calls with police, first alerting them to her missing granddaughter. so now three years later, casey set to get out of jail on sunday, facing tremendous public anger. and a public relations expert says there are some things -- >> she's one of the most watched and talked about people in the country. public relations executives weigh in with a word of caution to casey anthony. do not confuse infamy with fame. >> it's not fame. there's interest in you. a lot of it is negative interest. don't confuse that situation with celebrity. don't think that you have to go out and do a whole lot of things right now. right now it's best to probably
lay low. >> caylee! caylee! >> if that's even possible. angry words we heard outside the orange county courthouse are tiny compared to the casey anthony hatred expressed online. more than 770,000 people have signed on to just one of many anti-casey pages on facebook. >> we the jury find the defendant not guilty. >> acquitted in a court of law, casey anthony may need to begin fighting for her freedom in the court of public opinion the minute she walks out of jail. >> she doesn't need to walk out of jail smiling. she doesn't need to walk out of jail with a smirk on her face. she needs to walk out of jail looking like a mother who lost her child. >> and from in, exmerits believe it would be time, at least temporarily to disappear. consider the offers that come her way and decide how best to tell her story. >> we're going to have to hear
from casey anthony. we're going to have to hear a first person account. people will be interested in what she has to say. whether or not they accept it or not is a different story. >> and to show you how high the stakes are for casey anthony right now regarding her safety, her civil attorney today said that just today alone, he received seven -- >> we lost the sat lied. thanks very much. we got the gist of it. let's go 20 a man now who by all accounts is a stone cold killer. we're talking about the notorious mobster james whitey bulger, captured last month after 16 years on the run. we have a preview of a cnn special report. quite a story here, deb. >> it really is. james whitey bulger was arguably the undisputed king of south boston's criminal underworld. nothing happened without bulger
knowing about it and getting a piece of it. he shook down bookies and loan sharks. he charged thousands in rent to br bring cocaine and marijuana. and if though someone was going to get the better of him, he got to them first. today, the damage done by whitey bulger haunts boston and the families of his many alleged victims. bulger's life of crime started early. arrested in his teens, he was robbing banks by age 20. his shock of blond hair, earning him the name whitey, a name he is said to despise. with his hugged good looks and reckless flamboyance, bulger imagined himself boston ear version of hollywood gangster jimmy cagney. but instead of red carpets he was headed to alcatraz. a string of bank robberies land him in federal prison at age 25. he did his time and upon release
vowed h he would never, ever go back. >> they had no hard proof. >> the "boston globe" reporters ultimately uncovered the deal he cut to make sure of that. >> he got out of prison in 1965 and we started doing research in 1988, and he hadn't gotten so much as a parkting ticket. >> whitey bulger, fresh from prison went to work as a mob enforcer, but bulger wanted more and federal investigators say he would stop at nothing to get it. >> then he went on a killing rampage. i think it's like a month he killed guys in 1972. >> he was ambitious in making his move. >> and he was making his move with this man, steve flemmi, aka the rifle man. among their alleged victims, flemmi himself testified, his own girl, deborah davis. >> back in those days before dna was in use to identify victims,
he would get personally involved in cutting off hands and fingers of victims and their teeth. >> give me three words that describe whitey bulger. >> stone cold killer. >> now, stories of bulger's brutality are legendary. in one case, after allegedly failing to strangle one of his alleged victims with a boat rope, he asked if the man would prefer a bullet to the head and the man said yes, please. that comes from an eyewitness, a former mobster who turned state's evidence. he pleaded not guilty to 19 murders and other charge, there's a lot of testimony already out there. it's going to be a very interesting trial. i hope you watch the special this sunday at 8:00. >> thank very much. stone cold killer, part of cnn presents this sunday night. two planes collide. stand by for the latest on the runway accident at boston and how the passengers reacted. and rupert murdoch's new public
boston's logan international airport that could have been so much worse. it happened last night when a delta boeing 767 hit a commuter jet on the airport runway. we have details now. what do we know about this alan? >> wo . >> wolf, some very sloppy maneuvering on the taxi way as two planes were preparing to take off last night at boston's logan airport. a delta connection regional jet was in front of a delta 767. the smaller plane operated by atlantic southeast airlines turned on to a second taxi way. shortly afterwards, the large e plane clipped the smaller plane with its wing according to the ntsb. let's have a listen to the control tower talking to the pilots. you'll hear the term r.j., that's regional jet. >> we're going to have to wait here for a moment. i think we hit the r.j. off of the left of our week.
>> did he hit you with his wing? >> absolutely he did. >> the tail of the smaller plane suffered severe damage. there were about 300 passengers and crew members between the two planes. fortunately there were no serious injuries, just a lot of shocked travelers. >> we were taxiing pretty slowly then we felt a huge bump. it was terrifying. everybody just said at the same time, what happened. the tip of the wing sheared off. i think the tail fin came off of the other plane. >> the regional jet was to fly to raleigh durham. the 767 was headed for amsterdam. del sta sata said it provided h rooms for the passengers and got them out to their destinations today. the ntsb will have an initial report within ten days. a full anlalysis usually takes
number of months. >> i'm surprised these kinds of accidents don't happen even more frequently. all right, thanks very much for that. just days before jumping into the republican presidential race, michele bachmann quit her church. will the move hurt or help her candidacy. and mitt romney sharpens his message against president obama. he's now comparing the president to the former president jimmy carter. we'll get donna brazill in our strategy session. strategy session.
here in the united states, the fbi is investigating that reports working for rupert many dock tried to hire investigations to hack into the phones of 9/11 victims. >> there season an investigation. intercepting communications like that is a crime. it has to be investigated. i think what there shouldn't be -- and we've learned recently with a bunch of criminal cases of different kinds, don't rush to judgment. give people a presumption of innocence. i think that just how high up it goes is a big question, and it's one we shouldn't be jumping to conclusions about. >> giuliani spoke to our chief political correspondent candy crowley. we'll see much more on sunday morning, 9:00 a.m. eastern. let's get to our strategy session right now. joining urks two cnn contributors, donna brazile and the republican strategist alex
castellanos. do you think rudy giuliani is going to run for president again? >> i don't think so. i would say last time he had a better shot. >> i suspect you're right. but he didn't have -- he may have had a better shot, but he didn't do very well the last time in hissed by for the republican presidential nomination. let's talk about mitt romney. certainly he scares the democrats a lot more than some of the other republican candidates. >> i don't know if he scares us, but yes, he's on our radar screen. >> he's seen as more electable. independents might like him more than a michele bachmann or a sarah palin? >> i don't want to speak for the democrats, it's friday. we could change our mind by monday like mitt romney does all the time. >> let's see what he had to say about president barack obama. >> yes, mr. president, americans are stressed.
stressed about rising unemployment, falling home prices and an economy that isn't working for them. not since jimmy carter have we seen such failed economic policies. who would have guessed that we would look back upon the carter administration as the good old days. >> all right, he's really going after the president right now. >> look, there's no question every time the republicans get in trouble, they have to scapegoat the democrat. they normally compare a democrat to the previous president. obama was like carter, clinton is like carter. the truth of the matter is that obama is trying to do what's right for the american people. ronald reagan had to raise the debt ceiling 17 times. he came up with 25% spending cuts and 75% revenue increases. president obama would like to put 83% spending cuts on the table, 17% revenue. check the facts. i checked the facts. so the point is that we're stressed out about romney's record because when he was governor, massachusetts was ranked 47 out of 50 in terms of job creation.
>> sreagan actually proposed 25 taxes and 75% spending cuts, but donna is right. he couldn't trust the democratic congress. they gave him the exact opposite. romney is, i think, tying into a narrative that is catching hold out there. and that is that barack obama is jimmy carter without the accent. first, he's in over his head. the job is just a lit bit too big for him. like carter, big government is going to stimulate the economy. carter thought big government would cure inflation and it didn't. but it's more than that, it's personal. there's a sense that carter was this president who thought that he knew better than everyone. holier than thou. when you look at all the commercials running against barack obama, his chin is up, he's the washington elite. we people in washington know better than you little people out there. and that's why this story is beginning to stick. >> he comes to the table as the only -- >> who is he? >> president obama comes to the table as the only adult in the room willing to put everything
on the table. he's not saying it's my way or the highway. here's what i want to say about jimmy carter. he's a good man, a good human being. and he's still doing what -- he's doing the lord's work. i know you disagree with jimmy carter's policies, but i think he was an effective president. >> the problem is that -- and you remember this, we all lived through the jimmy carter inflat interest rates were at double digits, 444 days of americans held hostage in iran sort of advertising america's weakness. >> i had the record of the last eight years with george w. bush. i have the record of ronald reagan's years. if we're going to start comparing apples to oranges, that's fine. we're dealing with a debt crisis. and it's time for the grown-ups in the room come to the table and say you know what? we want to put america's fiscal house in order. everything needs to be on the table. >> he did broker the israeli-egyptian peace treaty. it's not just negative -- >> like obama, he's had some accomplishments, health care, however, at the end of the day,
people thought the job was too big for him. and that's part of the narrative here. that somehow jimmy carter was just not up to the job. that it was -- but you know, and it's so different too than barack obama the campaign. barack obama the campaign believed in the little people. yes, we can. but now the narrative he's spinning from washington is the american people can't do anything, washington has to solve all your problems. >> this blame game. blame president obama for every problem this country's facing while you basically tie his hands behind his back. that is not a fair way to assess his presidency. the best way to assess the presidency at the end of the day, was he able to turn things around for the american people? and let me tell you something, things are going to turn around. but you've got to stop -- >> come on. >> michele bauchmann is doing incredibly well in iowa. and all the republican polls. but today we learned that she and her husband left her long time church under circumstances, i'm not sure exactly what it means. i don't know if you've been
looking into this issue. but sort of reminds me to a certain degree. maybe there are differences. when president obama left his church and the reverend jeremiah wright for very different reasons. tell us what's going on with michele bauchmann and her church. >> apparently she's a member of an evangelical church that doesn't think a lot of catholic churches. >> for political reasons you think? >> well, she did it six days before she announced. you would think it had some political thing. republicans are not cut a lot of slack on this. republicans are seen by the washington elite and the media many times as kind of unsophisticated -- and so some of these attacks stick to republicans. >> the church is on record even on the website saying the pope is the anti-christ. of course, we know that's not true, bill maher is the anti-christ and he's very proud of it.
>> you remember the controversy the president had with reverend wright. >> well, i'm still a devout practicing catholic, and i disagree with some of the inflammatory language i saw on that church's website. but that's it, michele bauchmann has her own quotes and misleading statements she needs to correct, including signing a pledge at the time that had that reference to slavery and family. she's handled that issue absolutely wrongly. she should apologize for that. well, she is talented, but she should apologize. anyone knows that slavery was an inhumane institution. >> she's right on that, and she has. >> all right. thanks, guys. thanks very much. we're learning about a nightmare scenario that osama bin laden was hatching before he was killed. his apparent target, the president of the united states. we got new information. and if you're out of work right now trying to get a quick paycheck in the u.s. military may be mission impossible. what's this option? that's new.
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whenever you want them. it's the at&t network... and what's possible in here is almost impossible to say. in these tough financial times, you might think the u.s. military would be an obvious fallback positions for americans in need of a job. but what if you went ahead and enlisted and couldn't get a paycheck any time soon? let's bring in our pentagon correspondent chris lawrence. what's going on here, chris? >> well, this is a real wake-up call. especially for people out there who have been hit hard by the unemployment in the civilian world and think that by joining the military, they're going to be getting a check from the pentagon within a month or two. >> reporter: remember when it wasn't so hard to get a job or
join the army? >> then yesterday i really didn't think i'd have to search this hard, but i'm glad i did. >> these recruits trained all winter just to stay in shape for boot camp they may not get to for a year. >> two minutes to stretch on your own. >> so if any unemployed think the military is a path to a quick paycheck -- >> well, unfortunately, they may be a little bit disappointed. >> reporter: dr. kurtis gilroy describes a perfect storm that has quadrupled the time it takes to join the military. sky high civilian unemployment makes the military look more attractive. it also makes troops more likely to stay in. now factor in the services reducing their numbers to meet tighter budgets. it means some enlistees are forced to wait up to a year before they're allowed to leave for boot camp. >> how long does it take between the time someone says i want to join and they actually start making money? >> well, chris, for the typical
recruit today, the waiting time is between 9 and 11 months. now, it could be longer in some instances. >> reporter: that's a far cry from four years ago. when the average army recruit shipped off to boot camp 50 days after enlisting. >> how you doing? >> reporter: today only one out of every four recruits gets an enlistment bonus, and it's a fraction of what it used to be. >> so right now the average bonus is only $8,600? >> that's correct. >> compare that with several years ago, where we paid about half of our new enlistees a bonus on average of over $14,000. >> reporter: military is still recruiting. >> it's more than a uniform -- >> reporter: but it's more selective than ever. >> we have the highest quality military that we've had in about 20 years. >> and that means it's very, very tough for those who got out of the service and now want to
get back in. but there are some people who still get the big bonuses and don't have to wait long, special forces, intel analysts, and electronic maintenance technicians, those people are still in high demand. >> certainly are. chris lawrence at the pentagon. and you're in the "situation room." happening now, president obama and his top general in afghanistan, general david petraeus targeted by bin laden. and here in washington, president obama urges democrats and republicans to avert what he calls armageddon, telling them to set politics aside as the clock ticks closer toward an impending default on the u.s. national debt. and californians are bracing for what they call carmageddon. we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. breaking news and political headlines all straight ahead.
i'm wolf blitzer, you're in the "situation room." we begin with alarming new signs osama bin laden may have been plotting an attack on the president of the united states. those details coming from the stash of documents found inside bin laden's compound after u.s. special forces killed the al qaeda leader. our pentagon correspondent barbara star is working the details for us. tell us what we know, barbara. >> make no mistake about it that at this hour, there are grim new details about what osama bin laden had in mind. >> reporter: while hiding out in his compound, osama bin laden was hatching up a new nightmare scenario. bin laden didn't want to just strike the united states on the tenth anniversary of the attacks, he also wanted to kill the president. a u.s. official confirmed documents seized at the compound show bin laden was hoping to shoot down air force one while
president obama was traveling overseas. however, the official is adamant there was no specific assassination plot uncovered. bin laden was essentially brainstorming ideas. but defense secretary leon panetta who commanded the bin laden raid while heading the cia warns bin laden was capable of more than just brainstorming in the years he hid out. >> for a long time, the sense was he was an inspirational leader, but he wasn't the guy who was managing operations. and what we found out when we went into that compound, is that, in fact, he was someone that was operating on an operational basis. >> general david petraeus, the outgoing commander in afghanistan was also mentioned in the bin laden documents as a potential target to be shot down while he traveled in the war zone. a spokesman for petraeus declined to comment. the focus now for panetta is to keep attacking al qaeda in pakistan, yemen, and somalia. >> now is the moment following
what happened with bin laden to put maximum pressure on them. because i do believe that if we continue this effort that we can really cripple al qaeda. as a threat to this country. >> the u.s. has long said it believes al qaeda remains very interested in high-profile attacks and would like nothing better than to bring down a u.s. aircraft. apparently, osama bin laden was even talking about assembling a team of operatives. but of course, those navy s.e.a.l.s killed him in the compound before he could carry out the plan any further. >> general petraeus, i take it is getting ready to leave afghanistan, heading over to the cia? >> very soon. in fact, the change of command ceremony that will turn everything over in afghanistan to marine corps general john allen will take place monday morning in kabul. petraeus will get on a plane,
come back to the united states, retire from years of service in the active duty army, and, in fact, in the coming weeks will do exactly that. take over at the cia, which defense secretary panetta just left to come over to the pentagon. >> i hope he takes a little vacation first. he deserves it before he starts that new assignment. thanks very much. let's get to the escalating political turmoil boiling over in the middle east right now in syria. as many as 19 people were reportedly killed today amidst fierce new clashes between protesters and government security forces. in jordan, a rare scene when a typical peaceful demonstration turns brutally violent. arwa damon is there. >> reporter: at the front, a small group of monarchy loyalists followed by rows of police. separating them from the pro-reform demonstrators, numbering in the hundreds. chanting against the high cost of living.
carrying banners demanding political, economic, and social reforms. an end to corruption, and calling for a constitutional monarchy. frustrated by the slow pace of government reforms despite multiple pledges. the two sides have clashed in the past. prompting the government to promise the protesters will be protected. then, with the protesters steps away from their destination, the riot police charge in. chasing away and viciously beating the demonstrators. the media has been issued bright orange vests to identify us, we were told. this is not the image jordan's government wants the world to see, the tiny financially strapped nation can hardly afford to scare tourists away. most demonstrations here have been peaceful. but not this one. >> the demonstrators have regrouped in significantly smaller numbers, and appear to
be trying to make their way, again, into that central area where they're trying to state their demonstration. >> reporter: violence erupts again. we see a man beaten with sticks, kicked to the ground, and beaten again. others carry him off. we wait until he's well enough to speak and ask what happened. the officers opened the way to the square, ali tells us, so we called the group to come, but it seems the police are not following orders. they're getting back at anything called reform. we approach the store front where the group was gathered. inside, a man on the ground, tissues covered in blood. he was hit on the head, someone says. another shows us a gash in his arm. in the back, around 20 women huddled seeking shelter. >> she was hit on the head.
they're shaking right now. they're all saying they're quite shaken up, they don't really want to talk to us at this stage. >> reporter: after all that, the remaining demonstrators are allowed into the square. we ask that police press officer on site what happened. this photographer says the police attacked him and argues with the police press officer who denies the media was targeted. >> this is the moment i was hit. this. do you see it? >> yes. >> this is the last picture i took. he hit me with a shield. >> and so now all of the press -- i'm just being told in solidarity are removing these orange vests. >> police press officer finally gives us this explanation. there were two demonstrations with opposing views, he says, and they clashed, and the police tried to split them up, and sustained some injuries. and he denies that the police
beat people unnecessarily. >> we saw them, and we have on tape them beating people who were not doing anything at all, who were not -- >> that's what you saw, he says. the police use appropriate force. he was in the front row of the pro-reform demonstration. we did not see a single person attack us. we were right in front he says. the only people that attacked us were the security forces with their batons. though the demonstrators' numbers here were diminished, they remain steadfast behind their demands for real change and reform. arwa damon, cnn. >> we'll stay on top of that, thank you, arwa for that report. meanwhile, a dramatic new shift in u.s. policy toward libya. the secretary of state, hillary clinton, dealing moammar gadhafi a major blow by recognizing a
key rebel group as the legitimate leader as the country. >> until an interim authority is in place, the united states will recognize the tnc as the legitimate governing authority for libya. and we will deal with it on that basis. in contrast, the united states used the gadhafi regime as no longer having legitimate authority in libya. >> we'll now see if the u.s. government -- if the obama administration unfreezes some of that $33 billion in libyan assets and starts handing over some of those billions to this opposition group. we'll standby for that. meanwhile, damage control, the embattled media mogul rupert murdoch launching a media relations campaign just as there's another bombshell in the scandal. and president obama warns congress, time is running out for a deal on the national debt. why is it so hard for american politicians to compromise? we're digging deeper.
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murdoch's media empire. the "wall street journal" reporting that hinton is resigning from dow jones. murdoch's corporation owns dow jones and headed the news international during much of the time the alleged phone hacking went on. this while rupert murdoch is in england doing major damage control. let's bring in brian todd with the latest on what's going on. what is going on here, brian? >> well, for right now, he represents the ultimate challenge for crisis management expert. he's hired some of those, retained a big-time washington lawyer, and has started to separate himself from the properties and the people who have damaged them. >> reporter: if the gods of washington and london demand sacrifice in the time of crisis, count rebekah brooks as one of the top sacrifices. the chief executive of news international has resigned. he has sacrificed "news of the world." sacrificed his bid for bskyb.
he's met with the family of the murdered teenager whose phone was allegedly hacked by the newspaper. murdoch's running full-page newspaper ads apologizing for his company's conduct. after some hedging, he's finally agreed to appear before britain's parliament. >> is everything so far enough to turn the tide of public opinion? >> it's not. so far it's been too little, too late, and too defensive. >> reporter: crisis management expert richard levich has handled crisis management. but he and others said since it took two weeks to issue the apologies was disastrous. >> it's extraordinary to me that a company that has been so good down the years at trading in public opinion, which is what they do, they've got it so wrong every step of the way. >> it appears murdoch himself may not be feeling the blood.
his damage control may be ratcheting up. he's hired the world's largest pr firm, offices in more than 50 cities, including this building here in washington. part of what looks to be a dream team he's building for a public and legal counteroffensive. he's hired famed attorney brendan sullivan to handle legal matters in the u.s. former justice department official and new york schools chief joel kline will lead the internal investigation. still a tough road back in public opinion for a man who levich says spent 40 years intimidating politicians. >> if you're advising him going forward? >> tuesday's the most important thing. what he does when he testifies for parliament. he has to show up and be open and available. he cannot be defensive, and he cannot be arguing facts. >> he believes in the end, rupert murdoch and news corporation will survive all of this. but he says the legacy has been
permanently tarnished by this scandal. and he's not sure if his ownership of the less profitable print properties will survive. but he's vehemently denied he's going to give those up, wolf. >> what about his son james who is the chairman, ceo, chief executive of news corporation? what happens to him? >> well, blood runs thick in these situations. but he says it's too early right now to see if james murdoch will be a casualty. there's no need to get rid of him right now. but james murdoch is part of this too with reports he signed off on some payments to victims. is there going to be more from behind the curtain? he could be a casualty. >> we're watching to see what happens tuesday. thanks, brian. thanks very much. let's turn to the mounting gridlock in washington and over the nation's debt. the president is stressing once again today he's ready to act if republican leaders offer what he is calling a serious plan. republicans say it's the president who needs to start getting serious. let's bring in our chief political correspondent candy
crowley, the anchor of cnn's "state of the union," which airs every sunday morning. the rhetoric is heating up, i should say. >> i think the public's getting more and more confused. and i'm sure you probably hear it as much as i do whether from strangers or friends. people who cannot fathom why washington can't get it together to avert what senator mitch mcconnell said made him sick to his stomach and the president called armageddon. can't figure out why they can't figure out why they can't figure out a debt deal? first in a presidential election cycle, particularly in the primary season, there is more push and pull. >> legislation would authorize him to get to the amount he says he needs -- >> reporter: senator mitch mcconnell offers a small-deal way to break the impasse and gets blasted by his right for presenting a pontius pilot plan.
>> for surrendering in a noble way -- >> reporter: two, politics is more like religion these days, they believe what they believe. there is no compromise outside the gospel. three, math mematicmathematics. $435 -- there are 435 members in the house. bottom line, more than half the house of representatives have little political reason to compromise. the fault, dear voters, is in ourselves. >> americans have increasingly self-sorted themselves into like-minded neighborhoods and communities. and that makes it easier for the political map makers out there whether it was last decade or this decade to carve out districts that are heavily one way or the other and very little incentive for compromise. >> reporter: every ten years after the census, congressional districts are redrawn in the states and it has become easier over time to make red districts redder or blue districts bluer depending on the redrawings. four, the ideological cleansing
of the political pool. >> the president of the united states. >> reporter: there once was a republican president and a democratic speaker who struck a deal on social security, not because they had fewer safe house seats, but because they had a different kind of politician, conservative southern democrats and liberal republicans in the northeast or midwest. for whom survive often meant compromise. they are all but extinct now, the results of so-called wave elections, which swept out republicans in '06 and democrats in 2010. the ideological pool has been cleansed of those most likely to make deals. >> these wave elections have acted like a big -- all of the low-hanging fruit for each party, the most vulnerable members because they were kind of fish out of water in their districts, those are the members who are gone now, and those were the members who were most likely to reach across the aisle and touch the other party's hands. >> reporter: a compromise lies
in what these two men have in common. john boehner wants the house to stay republican, the president wants to be reelected. >> in the end, voters send their representatives to washington to represent their views, but they want leadership to do something. the futures of john boehner and barack obama may well depend on their ability to fix this. >> good piece. who's on "state of the union" sunday? >> the head of the office of management and budget is going to come on and talk to us about where the negotiations stand. lindsey graham, and rudy giuliani. he's up having a non-campaign in new hampshire. so we caught up with him up there to see what he's up to. >> revenue side meaning more taxes one way or another? >> right. >> sunday morning 9:00 a.m. eastern, right? state of the union with candy crowley. and come up this hour, i'll be speaking with steny hoyer. plus, the long-anticipated
drawdown in afghanistan begins. you're going to find out how many american troops in this initial withdrawal are coming out right away. and president obama joked he was calling for pizza. but in the end, delivering a personal message for america's final space shuttle crew. stick around. you're in the "situation room." woman: saving for our child's college fund was getting expensive. man: yes it was. so to save some money, we taught our 5 year old how to dunk. woman: scholarship! woman: honey go get him. anncr: there's an easier way to save. get online. go to geico.com. get a quote. 15 minutes could save you 15% or more on car insurance.
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president obama's initial troop drawdown in afghanistan is beginning. lisa sylvester is monitoring that. what's going on? >> hi, wolf. well, about 650 u.s. soldiers left northeastern afghanistan this week. and another 600 are in the process of heading out. u.s. military officials say they will not be replaced. president obama plans to pull
33,000 troops out of afghanistan by the end of next year. that's 1/3 of the american forces currently in afghanistan. and it's opening day in the united states for the final harry potter film. and it's already breaking records, no surprise there. "harry potter and the deathly hallows part ii" hauled in a record $42 million for thursday's midnight showing. that's not the only record it's smashing. overseas where it opened wednesday, it has taken in more than $82 million. and the crew of the space shuttle "atlantis" got a telephone call today from president obama. he joked he was dialing for pizza, but he ended up calling the international space station. a little humor there. the president told the crew, this may be nasa's final shuttle mission, but the u.s. won't stop human space flights. >> i just want to say how proud i am of all of you, congratulations to nasa, to all our international partners, and all of the personnel past and
present who spent countless hours making the space shuttle and the international space station a unique part of our history. >> "atlantis" returns to earth next thursday. and this is an absolute stunner out of hollywood. jennifer lopez and marc anthony, they are splitting up. in a joint statement the couple says, we have decided to end our marriage, it is a painful time for all involved. the american idol judge and anthony were married back in 2004, and they have 3-year-old twins. so i think i believe that this was her third marriage. so she is getting a divorce. >> how did you like the "harry potter" movie? >> i loved it. i do highly recommend it. i mean, very entertaining, and it wraps up a lot of the loose ends. so definitely go see it. >> more importantly, the kids liked it. >> the kids liked it. president obama's already raked in a record amount of campaign cash. now the republican numbers are in. just ahead, we'll tell you which
presidential candidate is on top. plus, inside those tense white house talks on the debt. i'll speak with someone at the table in the negotiations. mine was earned over the south pacific in 1943. vietnam, 1967. i got mine in iraq, 2003. u.s.a.a. auto insurance is often handed down from generation to generation, because it offers a superior level of protection and because u.s.a.a.'s commitment to serve the military, veterans, and their families is without equal. begin your legacy. get an auto insurance quote. u.s.a.a. we know what it means to serve. somewhere in america, there's a doctor who can peer into the future. there's a nurse who can access in an instant every patient's past. and because the whole hospital's working together, there's a family who can breathe easy, right now. somewhere in america, we've already answered some of the nation's toughest healthcare questions. and the over 60,000 people of siemens
washington in his words operates as usual. our congressional correspondent kate baldwin is up on capitol hill with new details of what's going on. kate, what is the very latest? >> reporter: the very latest, wolf, we had tough talk from the white house today, but with the clock ticking. it has house republicans looking elsewhere. >> reporter: after a week straight of debt negotiations and little progress to show for it, president obama used his bully pulpit friday telling congress time is running out. >> if they show me a serious plan, i'm ready to move, even if it requires some tough decisions on my part. >> reporter: but even before the president spoke, house republicans emerged from a closed door meeting with a different strategy. >> we ask the president to lead, we asked him to put forward a plan, not a speech, a real plan. and he hasn't. we will. >> reporter: house republicans are now moving ahead with a vote
next week on a separate initiative long supported by conservatives. it would cut and cap spending and make raising the debt ceiling contingent on congress passing a balanced budget amendment to the constitution. >> otherwise known as the cut cap and balance bill. to provide a balanced approach so that we can demonstrate that we are getting things under control. >> reporter: that plan, however, is likely little more than a symbolic vote for house republicans as the measure is not expected to get through the senate and the president has already made his position clear. >> we don't need a constitutional amendment to do our jobs. >> reporter: and the growing sentiment is, the way out of this debt ceiling impasse may be taking shape on the opposite side of the capitol in the senate, a deal that would allow the president to raise the federal borrowing limit and allow republicans to cast a vote of disapproval. it could also set up a bipartisan commission to recommend spending cuts. the top senate democrat and republican are working on that
plan. the only one so far that all sides appear open to. >> i am not prepared at this point to pick winners or losers. listen, senator mcconnell pointed out that his plan was being put on the table as a last-ditch effort. we're far from the time for a last-ditch effort. >> if washington operates as usual and can't get anything done, let's at least avert armageddon. >> now, right now, according to congressional aides, there are no meetings on the schedule for the weekend between the negotiators, but i'll tell you, an aide to boehner says boehner has cleared his schedule for the weekend. and speaker boehner along with cantor met with geithner and chief of staff bill daly this afternoon, wolf. >> we'll watch closely, thanks very much. and joining us now, the number two democrat in the house
of the representatives, representative steny hoyer of maryland. congressman, thanks very much for coming in. >> good to be with you, wolf. >> you've been in the white house in all of the meetings that the president had with the republican leadership. is there really a split based on what you've seen and heard between the house speaker john boehner and the number two republican eric cantor? >> well, i think that's -- there's an apparent split whether there's a real split or not, i don't know. the speaker is telling his story and cantor's telling his story and they'll converge at some point in time. i hope that's the case. i'm pleased, of course, the speaker has indicated he wants, the president wants, and i share that view, and every democratic leader sitting around that table shares that view that we ought to do a big plan that we ought to not just do the temporary -- respond to the temporary crisis and do a little bit on the debt and deficit. but we ought to have a plan that will stand us in good stead for the next ten years. i hope we can get there, i think
the speaker wants to get there. and i'm going to keep working toward that end. >> do you have any reason to believe that the president and you say there have to be additional tax increases and revenue as part of that so-called big plan. the speaker say he is doesn't have the votes to do that in the house of representatives. and as a result, it's dead. >> well, i'm not sure what the speaker means he doesn't have the votes. if he means that he doesn't have any republicans, well, then, of course, we don't have the votes in the majority. if he means there are some republicans opposed to that, yes, i agree with that. there was a gallup poll just out, wolf, that said 74% of republicans think you need a balanced plan of spending cuts and revenues. and let me make a point. revenues are not the same thing as tax increases. for instance, if you eliminate tax loopholes for millionaires or oil companies, you're not raising their rates, you do get additional revenues by eliminating loopholes. >> but the republicans say, congressman, if you do that,
they would go for those elimination of those, but you've got to balance it with a reduction in tax rates elsewhere so there's no net increase in taxes. >> and where are you? you're not any closer to reducing the deficit and debt than you were before. the republicans, you know, passed a program in 2001. and in 2001, they said the deficit was going to be $4 trillion less of deficit spending than actually occurred. $4 trillion less so that we were $4 trillion in debt, they said we were going to be in surplus during those times when we pursued the economic program they're talking about now. so the fact of the matter is, if you simply get more revenues but then reduce taxes by an equivalent amount, you haven't done anything with the debt and the deficit that they say is so important to deal with. do we need to cut spend sng yes, can we do it without a balanced program? no. can we do it on the backs of those who are hard working and
struggling? no, we need to do it in asking for help from those who have had the best success and most profits during this past decade. and cut spending both across the board with discretionary and defense as well as look at entitlements to make sure they're sustainable and there for the beneficiaries. >> but if you don't get there, you ready to accept mitch mcconnell's last-ditch compromise plan to get through to the disaster potentially of a default by the united states government? >> look, everybody around that table -- you're not mitch, wolf, believes that default is not an option. we believe that's an unanimous opinion around that table. we're going to make sure the u.s. does not -- >> so the answer is yes. you would accept it if necessary, as a last-ditch option. >> if it were the last-ditch option, we're not going to allow default. i hope not because i don't believe it's a good option, i
don't believe our party believes it's a good option. and frankly, mr. cantor said in our meetings, he didn't believe it was a good option and has been quoted to saying that in public. so it's not too appealing on our side. what is appealing, though, and i want to reiterate this is we ought to be able to come together and have a grand bargain, which takes care of the long-term $4 trillion in cuts and revenues dealing with all elements of expenditures in the federal government and get our finances in order. that's what the american people want us to do. and they want us to do it in a bipartisan fashion. hopefully we can do that. >> one final question. the republicans leadership in the house, they say they're going to have an amendment, legislation next week calling for a balanced budget amendment to the constitution. and it'll be an up and down vote. will you go for that? >> no. but they were going to have a balanced budget amendment on the floor. that was on our schedule, that's
what i announced to our members this morning. they pulled that off the floor. i'm not sure why they pulled it off the floor, but obviously their condition for voting for a debt limit increase, which by the way mr. boehner and cantor voted for numerous times before, their condition was that pass both the house and the senate. now they've substituted this balance and cut amendment and cap amendment -- or legislation which calls for a balanced budget amendment. i don't know why they substitute a balanced budget amendment, which they say they want for a bill which simply calls for what they had already scheduled. it seems like a bait and switch. >> they want to get on the record that they support this balanced budget amendment. they want democrats to vote against it, they want to vote in favor of it because politically they think that's a winner. >> well, wolf, they could have done that either way. they could have voted for that amendment that they had
scheduled. i've got a feeling that there are a lot of republicans who looked at that and said this doesn't make sense. this will create further deadlock, further gridlock in the congress, and further fiscal risk to the american people and to our country, and it really is not justified. and i think frankly that may be one of the reasons they pulled it. >> steny hoyer, thanks very much for coming in. >> thank you. we're just learning that the president of the united states tomorrow will meet with the dalai lama over at the white house. these meetings are always very, very sensitive. the chinese government, obviously, not very happy when the dalai lama is received over at the white house. we'll see what kind of coverage the white house officials will allow, if they will allow cameras inside to get pictures of the president, the dalai lama always a sensitive issue given china's position on all of this. we'll watch it closely. meanwhile, president obama may be deadlocked with republicans over raising the debt limit. but he's outstripping his gop
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gloria borger. we've got the numbers behind you. romney, $18.5 million, tim pawlenty, $4.5 million, huntsman, $4.1 million. gingrich $2 million, rick santorum, not so much, $500,000. give us a perspective on this. >> well, let's talk about mitt romney, front-runner, obviously with $18.5 million. that looks good, of course, in comparison to the rest of the candidates, but there were some unofficial estimates that by now he would've raised $50 million, wolf. so that's not so great. i think tim pawlenty here may be the great disappointment. because he got in this race early, he's been out there trying to raise money. he's had some problems gaining traction. and when you look at it, he's raised exactly the same amount as ron paul. so that could be a real disappointment. >> and bauchmann and huntsman, what do you think about that? >> well, they look pretty good on the boards, right? $4.2 million, $4.1 million, but
huntsman has given his own campaign $2 million. and michele bauchmann, we just got her numbers this afternoon, she's transferred $2 million from her congressional committee. so the totals look pretty good, but it's actually they've raised about half the amount. >> newt gingrich, what did he have? $2.1 million. >> he would. but there should be a little asterisk to that because he's actually $1 million in debt. >> already? >> don't forget, this comes after the implosion of his top staff, lots of his fundraisers have left. so i think he's going to have a tough hull -- >> compare these numbers to president obama. because -- >> well -- >> it's not even a fair comparison. >> we happen to have a graphic on that, and obama, $47 million. that's $47 million, all of the republican candidates combined, $41 million. today we got some figures of the people who are raising money,
bundling money, if you will, for barack obama. you won't be surprised to know a lot of them are from hollywood. brother of rahm emanuel, now mayor of chicago has raised between $50,000 and $100,000 for the president. hollywood producer jeffrey katzenberg has risen $20,000. there's one republican candidate running against president obama, you have all the money from the outside groups, the national committees, as well as the expenditure groups. i believe that the republicans and the democrats will probably be pretty much at parody, wolf. in terms of money. >> but it's hard to believe that, and i'll tell you why because the president of the united states faces no opposition from the democrats, from the -- in his bid to get the nomination of his own party. the republicans have to fight in every state, iowa, new
hampshire, south carolina, florida, they're going to spend a lot of money there. >> right. so the president has a head start. but republicans want to win. and they've become very adept at raising money through outside groups as have democrats -- as have democrats, but we'll have to see the enthusiasm here of the republican voters, and i think they're going to be quite enthusiastic. barack obama is very unpopular, and that enthusiasm may transfer into an awful lot of money. >> if he raises $1 billion, the president of the united states -- it's going to be hard for the republicans to compete with that. >> is there a recession? or did i miss that? yeah. >> thanks very much. los angeles, famous, infamous some may say for the highway gridlock. you're going to find out why this weekend could be like nothing that city has ever seen. and mexico's army makes a huge discovery. a marijuana field bigger than 100 football fields. how did it remain hidden in plain sight? rchirping ] ♪ [ doug ] i got to figure this out.
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it's sparking dread but also $4 computer flights. casey, what's going on over there? >> reporter: well, wolf, the culprit of all this carmageddon as some are calling it is right behind my right shoulder. there you can see the mull hole hand bridge. and what authorities will be doing is de3408 limolishing hal that bridge that will result in high occupancy vehicle car pool lanes. but over the weekend, authorities are worried that congestion throughout southern california is going to be really, really bad potentially. ten miles of the 405, a major thoroughfare, will be completely shut down for 53 hours.
what authorities are asking people to do is to rely on public transportation. it's a dicey proposition, but they have added more buses and some more computer trains. they're also asking that people if it they don't have to drive to avoid driving completely. and if they do have to drive, they plotteded out alternative roots to stay away from the west side of los angeles. people are calling this car made g g carmagedd carmageddon, but in 194, you had two major freeways that shut down and the city survived then. let's go to my colleague who is actually driving on the 405 freeway as we speak. >> reporter: i'm driving toward you coming right up the pass on the 405. as you look at this, you may say
to yourself this looks like awful traffic. believe it or not for a friday afternoon when you consider people leaving work headed for a three day weekend, leaving the beach, whatever the case may be, this is actually quite good because at times the 405 can be a virtual partly clounltual par. many of the on and off-ramps are absolutely deplorable. wi sunset, santa monica, among the awful ramps. and if it this project is late, if the job is not done before the deadline which is of course 5:00 a.m. on monday morning, it could be fined up to $72,000 an hour. so, wolf, just be glad that you are not out here on the 405 enduring this fun filled night of carmageddon as they call it. back to you. >> i'm just glad i'm not on that. we've got problems here with the
washington belt way. before i let you go, folks in los angeles i assume they're ready, a lot of them are simply just getting out of town, right? >> reporter: a lot of them are getting out of town. a lot of hotels in orange county far out elsewhere in southern california, offering special deals to entice people to get out of los angeles. many of those hotels absolutely booked right now. >> we'll stay on top of this story. good luck to everybody in the los angeles area. thank you. army troops discover mexico's largest ever marijuana field. in fact, you have to see it from the air to appreciate just how big it is. we'll tell you how incredibly far it reaches. and for our north american viewers on john king, we'll take you to the rebel front lines in will i be kr will i be krliby libya. will i be krliby libya. from we who believe we know just how you feel.
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tsunami. in serbia, a boy plays in a fountain to cool off from a heat wave 37 a wave. and in india, an owl that was rescued. hidden in plain sight, mexico has stumbled on to what may be the largest marijuana plantation in the country's history. it stretches for more than 300 acres. rafael romo reports. >> reporter: the massive extension of the illegal crops can only seen from the air. field after field of marijuana grown between toe mamato talks. the mexican army says this is the biggest marijuana plantation ever found in the country.stalk. the mexican army says this is the biggest marijuana plantation ever found in the country. >> translator: once it's processed, the field will be destroyed by the method of incineration.
>> reporter: the illegal field was found in mexico's baja peninsula. 450 miles south of tee with an that. it stands 300 acres. mexican officials say it's 168 times larger than the soccer field that mexico city's stadium. >> translator: it's very important to point out that with this finding, we have stopped the harvest of 120 metric tons of marijuana that would have produced 60 million doses. this considerably affects the financial structure of drug traffickers and organized crime. >> reporter: the army detained six people as part of the operation, 250 mexican soldiers will be deployed to the plantation with the mission of destroying the illegal plants in the next few days. the drug would have had a street value of up to $160 million according to mexico's department of defense. a report issued by the u.n. says that